Logs from the Black Forest

Claydon, Steven
Steven Claydon is an artist and musician whose installation pieces comprise found objects, paintings and sculpture. Logs from the Black Forest consists of a range of items, including a blue office paper file and a hand from a monumental sculpture, both mounted on plinths. These plinths are bisected by the centerpiece of the work, a large, three-panel office display board, painted with abstract shapes and two grotesque semi-naked figures: a man incised with geometric cuts and a clown-like figure, his loin cloth the colour of the plastic file opposite. As in much of his sculptural work, the piece plays with the juxtaposition of the monumental and the banal: the folding office display board mirrors the form of an altarpiece triptych; on their plinths, the sculpted hand is afforded the same importance as the paper file; the painted figures evoke both the masters of surrealism and popular cartoons. For Claydon, the pairing of these apparently contradictory elements aims to explore ‘the difference between the public face of art and the private nature of it’, particularly in relation to the political character of the monumental sculpture, which is invariably ‘figurative’ and ‘patriarchal’. ‘What I was interested in doing,’ he says, ‘was to try and highlight this by making a collision of elements within various props, or a hybrid idea of a public monument by creating a fiction.’
  • Artwork Details: screen x 3, each, 199 x 81cm plinth with stand, 145 x 40.5 x 40.5cm hand, 18.6 x 40.5 x 23.5cm folder, 30.4 x 23.4 x 6.6cm plinth, 40.5 x 40.5 x 40.5cm
  • Edition:
  • Material description: oil on canvas, steel, bakram, wood, bronze and plastic
  • Credit line: © the artist
  • Theme:
  • Medium:
  • Accession number: ACC29/2007



The Arts Council Collection is the UK's most widely seen collection of modern and contemporary art.

With more than 8,000 works by over 2,000 artists, it can be seen in exhibitions and public displays across the country and beyond. This website offers unprecedented access to the Collection, and information about each work can be found on this site.